Contributors to this thread:
Two strange pronghorn hunting questions
1). I've not heard nor seen any mention of the affect of hunter scent while antelope hunting. Is this because it isn't a factor or because no one discusses it ? I've only hunted 'lopes from a ground blind and I've never worried about the wind as a concern for scent control. Should this be a concern - either for blind sitting or spot and stalk ?
2). I plan on using my 12x50 binoculars for my pronghorn hunt. However, using them without a tripod is fatiguing. I'd like some suggestions regarding some really sturdy tripods - say max price of $100.
Thanks in advance.
As far as your second question, Slik makes some nice tripods that cost around $100. Check out the Slik mini. Works great from a seated position - will not extend to a standing position if you need that kind of height.
Nikon also makes a tripod that will work for under $100, but it's heavy and bulky.
With regard to scent, in my very limited experience for blind hunting it is a no. For stalking....absolutely.
I think scent is a factor, even in a blind. Maybe not to a great extent but, I know that if you empty your pee bottle outside of the blind they will smell it. I have used 8X and 10X glasses and had no problem seeing goats way out there. I'm not sure 12X is needed.
I probably should have expanded. I think it is a factor too but from what I understand a Pronghorn relies so much on his eyes that they will override his other senses. More often than not they will not spook if they don't see anything. There is no doubt that they do smell you though in blinds and some do actually spook off. Also....I am novice but I am relaying what I learned from one of the best....Bill Allard.
I was just gonna a say what bow freak said...they like to see the threat...but will sometime spook on scent...sometimes not..for sure they can smell well and do...
I can also add.....they most definitely will hit the next county when I try to stalk them :)
For a tripod, head to any camera store and see what you find.
I've had scent bust them while in a blind.
If nothing else, it puts them on alert...like they aren't already like that.
They certainly rely on sense of smell, but the need to drink may be fairly powerful? Almost always circle downwind when approaching a decoy.
You definitely want to be mindful of the wind.Their nose may not be as good as a deer's but I have had them wind me well over 100 yds in the open.A blind will help a lot.Also a low,evening sun,hitting them in the face can really mess with that binocular vision.
Scent is less important than for Whitetails but don't think you won't get busted if a small group comes in.
Lone bucks seem to be less worried but you have a smart doe and you could be up-a-creek.
Stalking - well - yes but the fact they can see you from a mile away is more worrisome :).
From my experience, having killed nine ( six with a bow ), they do smell you , but for some reason, just don't blow out like deer do. I don't see how the one I killed last year didn't smell me when my movement spooked him straight into my scent stream. I wasn't expecting him to come back, but he did, and I was ready for him.
For glassing, a fluid head tripod is amazing. They are made for making smooth pans while videoing. I rest my bios on top without connecting them to the tripod just putting some downward pressure on them and it makes for some really efficient glassing with no jerking or shaking.
I had a nice antelope buck run towards me during the rut in SD. Once he felt that I was not a doe or rival buck, he circled downwind before spooking and running back to his harem.
Later, I managed to get ahead of the group he was in and decoyed him in to 10 yards and was drawing when the wind blew over my decoy - no shot.
I generally travel through my hunting area with the wind in my favor to avoid them getting my scent.
As far as tripods are concerned, I just sit and steady my elbows on my knees.
I had these buck come in down wind at 80 yards. They stopped........
had this buck come in down wind at 100 yards, he stopped and
Same day, had this buck 500 yards down wind, and figured he would follow the same track as the first buck.
I closed all of the windows in the blind except a small shooting hole facing the water. I applies Sage Scent, to all of the windows to keep my human send at a minimum.
A half hour later he walked from down wind, right past the blind.
Killed him at 25 yards.
Human Scent a concern? You bet. Stay down wind or try to mask it.
my best, Paul
Scent is a factor. However they rely on eye sight way more than they use their noses. Seems sometime they don't care as much about human scent. I've been busted plenty of times by them smelling me I can tell you that.
12x50's are great! Even better on a tripod. Maybe look for a used manfrotto tripod of something ?
When stalking pronghorn, most certain have to keep the wind in your face. They seem to use their noses more when bedded than their sight but usually will stop for that second look. As far as a tripod goes, look into the vortex summit ss. weighs about a lb and compacts down nicely to stuff in your bag and no extra weight when it comes to walking to and from the blind or if you are using it while stalking.
Just finished a successful Wyoming antelope hunt and during the hunt had several antelope come in from downwind, they snorted and wheezed for several minutes before retreating. I never did see these antelope come to my water hole and may have went to another. I moved the next day to a pop up blind where I shot a nice buck and although they didn't come in exactly downwind they didn't react much to the blind or any scent that may have been lingering about.